Ex-cop facing charges seeks release

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Published on KeysNews.com (http://keysnews.com)

Ex-cop facing charges seeks release

Wednesday, January 13, 2010
BY ROBERT SILK Free Press Staff rsilk@keysnews.com

PLANTATION KEY — A former Miami Beach cop charged with attempted murder of his estranged wife and her boyfriend at her Plantation Key home last spring is asking for the chance to be set free on bond.

William Thomas Skinner, 54, is scheduled to appear before Monroe County Circuit Court Judge Luis Garcia on Friday, Jan. 15, when his lawyers will ask that bail be set.

For several months Skinner’s lawyers, Cara Higgins and Jerome Ballarotto, sought a court order for Skinner to be moved to a psychiatric hospital, where he was to have received treatment for depression and suicidal tendencies. Garcia, however, has denied their petitions.
On Dec. 30 Skinner’s defense team changed tact and asked instead for the bond hearing.

Higgins, last week, declined to get into the specifics when asked why Skinner wouldn’t be a risk should he be released from jail on bond. But she did say he has been treated for depression.

“There have been some recent developments,” she said. “Everything is going to be educed at the hearing. There is no reason why he shouldn’t be bonded out right now.”

The Monroe County State Attorney’s Office disagrees.
“[T]he state contends that there is absolutely no conditions of release that can reasonable (sic) protect the community, especially the victims and even the defendant himself from the risk of physical harm,” Assistant State Attorney Colleen Dunne wrote in a Jan. 5 motion.

According to police and investigative reports, Skinner showed up unannounced at Indira’s north Plantation Key home on the morning of June 1. After putting his wife in a choke hold in front of their 4-year-old son Luke, Skinner let her loose and returned to his car. A moment later he came back gun in hand.Indira placed a phone call to 911 as her boyfriend, Jesus Ruvalcaba, tried to hold Skinner off at the door, reports say.

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